Sex, Food, and the Hunger For Distinction

Jonah Berger, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, USA
Baba Shiv, Stanford University, USA
Similarity and distinction play important roles in identity processes and decision making, but little work has examined the motive of distinctiveness per se. While most work treats distinction as a source of self-esteem, other research argues it’s a fundamental need. Five studies explore the nature of distinctiveness, illustrating that it shares kinship with basic motives like mating. Activating basic drives (e.g., sexual desire) makes distinctive options more desirable, and distinctiveness itself influences the desirability of other rewards. Consistent with our perspective, these effects are moderated by individual and cultural differences in the desirability of distinction, and satiation of activated motivational states.
[ to cite ]:
Jonah Berger and Baba Shiv (2010) ,"Sex, Food, and the Hunger For Distinction", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 276-279 .